A cross section of Imo people have reacted to the State share of N7 billion naira it received from the Paris Club refund from the Federal Government.
They called for the effective use and deployment of the funds by ensuring that workers and pensioners are adequately paid their salaries and pensions.
Mrs Nkeiruka Okafor, a Spa outlet owner in Owerri said with the release of the funds, Imo workers and pensioners have no reason to complain over non payment of their dues anymore.
“We have seen pensioners protest on the streets of Owerri many times. That was an eyesore. It does not tell well of the government. Now that we have gotten 7 billion from the bail out funds, the pensioners should be paid their outstanding arrears.No excuse this time by the government ” she said.
Mr. Frank Njoku, a businessman commended the Federal Government for releasing the funds which he said demonstrates its commitment to ameliorate the sufferings of Nigerians.
He called on Governor Rochas Okorocha to ensure that the funds are used to pay the pensioners.
“There is no reason why our pensioners will cry again that they have not been paid. This money we have now is enough to pay them. I heard their outstanding arrears is about N1.5 billion. The state government now have enough money to pay them regularly without complaning. This is the time to make our aged pensioners happy” he said
Mrs Getrude Onunuju, a teacher said “I commend the StateGovernor,Owelle Rochas Okorocha, for the ongoing infrastructural renewal he is carrying out in the state. But he should know that a hungry man cannot appreciate anything when there is no money for him to feed and take care of his family.
“Our pensioners have suffered so much. This should not be the case. It is very painful seeing our aged mothers and fathers protesting on the streets just to collect their pensions. It is totally unacceptable. I hope the governor will end all that now since we have these funds which I believe is more than enough to pay the pensioners and the workers” she said.
The Imo State government had said that it has continued to pay pensioners but explained that it is deeply worried over the bloated figure of pensioners arrears.
Governor Rochas Okorocha had last week confirmed that Imo State got N7 billion naria from the bail out funds.
Sam Egejuru, a contractor advocated that part of the funds should be used to settle the state government debts to many contractors they are owing.
“Much as the money is for workers salaries and pensioners, there were some contractors who did jobs for this government and were never paid till date.
“7 Billion Naria is a lot of money. Some part of it can be used to pay those contractors that are owed so much money”
” We heard that some monies got missing from the first tranche of the bail out that came to the State. I read it on the newspapers anyway. If it was true, such should not happen again.
“Our Governor is really doing his best. We see new structures everyday, but he should know that there is hunger in the land. In other words, let him use some of the bail out funds to pay the pensioners and the workers. There is too much suffering in the land” he said